After enjoying an awesome dinner at Las Bovedas in Panama City’s Casco Viejo, I headed out to see what the nightlife had in store. I’ve always been a night owl and no longer care about the questionable stares I get whenever I ask around about places open past 2 a.m. I just like to dance people. I’m 25. Maybe one day I’ll get over it, but for now, I’m dancing in streets, on top of tables, in restaurants, wherever… and if you’re judging me — preferably when you’re asleep. Life is for celebrating.

Central and South America are known to have some of the world’s best into-the-next-day nightlife and I was excited to test it out!

I stumbled into a place called Zaza with a Miami-style line down the street of club goers in their tightest and highest which made it clear that this was a good place to start. Somehow I got through the door in my airport jeans and sandals and was immediately reminded of Matrix/Novela in San Francisco. Restaurant/lounge, loud top 40’s music, bottle service, not enough room to dance… a swankly-decorated place to go for appearances.

There was a rooftop bar upstairs I wanted to see but ended up joining a group at their table and let the locals pick where we’d head next. This is where it gets good: Teatro Amador.

Oh, Panama City. I may have just hit it on a good night but if this place is representative of Central/South American nightlife, I’m definitely living in the wrong country.

Inside a restored old movie theater, the two-story venue is a perfect blend of San Francisco’s underground deep house scene and NYC’s old Greenhouse with way better speakers and none of the bougey ‘tudes. I’m a sucker for laser lights and sick beatz. Solid sound system? It’s love.

I thoroughly enjoyed crowd-watching from the balcony, the ambiance, the conversations, the crowd, the decor, then the dance floor… and next thing you know it’s 5 a.m. and my flight is looming around the corner. Perfect.

When you find yourself in this area, if you like to dance, I must insist you check out Teatro Amador. Point for you, Panama City.

Where are some of your favorite places to dance the night away? Would you rather be sleeping?